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4 Barriers to Building a Digital Business and How to Overcome Them

The world is becoming increasingly digital because consumers demand faster service and convenience from their business transactions. This shift toward digitalization requires businesses to change the way they operate. Learn about the major barriers that traditional companies face in the online space and how to overcome them.

Rakesh Soni
Rakesh Soni
August 02, 2018
5 min read

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The movement towards digitalization is occurring across all business sectors. Even industries that have always been solely focused on growing and expanding their existing business models are joining the movement. However, there are some roadblocks that these companies have to overcome in order to successfully build a digital business. But don't let these roadblocks stunt your digital growth! Here are some tips to help you along:

1. Inability to work as a team

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Many companies across industries are actively working towards transforming their businesses to digital. This includes using technology to improve/optimize the existing business model, in order to pave the way towards building more efficient digital workflows.

Digital optimization have been shown to improve business performance, enhance business intelligence and analytics, as well as increase productivity. This is why so many want to go digital, however, this is not a one person job. The problem is that sometimes companies are too keen to make this happen, that they start multiple projects with different teams at the same time. Over time, this can become scattered and the teams can lose sight of what it is they're working towards and what is expected out of them.

To make sure that you don't suffer from the same fate, start by creating a dedicated digital innovation team. While it's important to make sure the team members are digitally-savvy, it's also worth noting that this shouldn't only include technical personnel, but also those from business too, as they will be directly affected by the digitized business models and processes.

This team, comprised of different representations from within the company, will be able to lead the digital projects and make sure that the team expectations align with the company's goals.

2. Lack of corporate vision

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While the majority of your company may have the same goal of moving towards digital, the motives and driving force behind achieving this goal can differ from one person or team to the other. Some may be looking to simply optimize the current workflows to enhance productivity and business outcomes, while others are seeing this as a move towards bigger innovations that will potentially disrupt the entire industry. In this case, there are conflicting ideas of why the company is undergoing a digital reform and how to proceed.

How do you make sure this doesn't happen? It's important to lay out a clear roadmap for all of the members involved in the digital transformation to make sure that everyone is clear about the path that the company is taking towards this initiative.

In order to do this, however, you first need to consider and be certain to communicate the company's goals for building a digital business: Are you in it to simply optimize your current processes and pave the way for digital growth? Or are you looking to invest heavily in digital innovation with the goal of disrupting the entire industry?

3. Gaps in organizational capabilities to deliver digital innovation

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Your goals are set and you've got everyone on board to work towards a common digital outcome.

Now what?

Now is time to evaluate the capabilities within your company - not only the people and their skills, but more importantly, the company's resources and infrastructure. Do you have the systems and resources in place for digital operations?

This is the stage where you need to evaluate your internal resources, including the current technology build, systems, AI, and software. This will give you a clear picture of the tools you already have and what else you need in order for a successful digital optimization.

More often than not, it's not the team's incapabilities to deliver certain results, but the tools they are given. Make sure you give them what they need in order for them to successfully help you realize your goal of building a digital business.

4. Inadequate leadership

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Digital transformation is exciting, but it is also a new concept that companies across industries are only experimenting with in the past few years. Excitement aside, new processes, especially one that affects entire business models and operations, can be daunting.

Transforming existing processes and building new ones are dramatic changes that affect the entire company. Changes such as this can lead to discomfort and conflict. Therefore, strong leadership is essential at all levels to drive beneficial change without increasing risk or creating organizational chaos. Make sure you have the right leadership roles in place as the company moves towards its digital initiatives to ensure its success.

5. Lack of right talent

According to a new Mulesoft study, two-thirds of IT decision makers confessed to being unable to deliver on digital projects due to an IT delivery gap. The absence of business-aligned skills and talent is the single biggest obstacle to progress on digital transformation.

In our experience, organisations with the right skills win twice – first, they transform faster; second, they put in place the talents necessary to keep projects on track for longer.

So, given the rapid pace of digital transformation and technological advancement, companies must make bringing in the right talent and filling their skills gaps a top priority if they hope to get ahead of their competition.

6. Lack of collaboration with customers

With the disruptive technologies emerging, many companies will transform or perish. Only those that create a culture of innovation, embrace new ways of working, and put the customers at the heart of their strategy will succeed.

Unfortunately, old habits like the silo mentality that operates in a vacuum to deliver technology solutions are no longer sufficient. Organizations must adopt a customer-centric mentality and innovate from the inside out.

Conclusion

Successful digital transformation involves the full breadth of an enterprise – a strategy that spans business units and locations, as well as IT groups and departments. It can no longer be implemented by business units “going it alone” or by IT “managing the back end.” Instead, successful digital transformation requires leadership to drive disruptive change across teams, locations, functions and technology.

If you or your company are currently going through digital transformation, see how LoginRadius can help you speed this up!

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Rakesh Soni

Rakesh Soni

Entrepreneur by Work. Artist by ❤️. Engineer by Trade. Human Being. Feminist. Proud Indian. CEO/Co-founder at LoginRadius, securing 1B+ IDs worldwide.

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